Advertisement

Ecosystem Services in South Africa

  • Catherine SutherlandEmail author
  • Bahle Mazeka
Part of the World Regional Geography Book Series book series (WRGBS)

Abstract

South Africa is endowed with a rich biodiversity and a relatively high production of ecosystem services. However, these services are under threat, which has consequences for the transformation of South Africa to a more just, resilient and sustainable society, which is in part dependent on the ways in which ecosystem services are valued and managed. This chapter defines the concept of ecosystem services and presents different approaches that have been adopted in valuing ecosystem services in South Africa. Ecosystem services can be considered in terms of their value to social and environmental wellbeing, particularly in addressing poverty; their economic value; their benefits for climate change adaptation; their inclusion in planning and development; and their social construction, which in some cases, results in an ‘ethics of care’. However, the institutionalisation and implementation of the ecosystem services concept in policy and practice in South Africa remains challenging.

Keywords

Ecological infrastructure Ecosystem services Ethics of care Natural capital Resources Socioecological relations 

References

  1. Blignaut J, Marais C, Rouget M, Mander M, Turpie J, Klassen T, Preston G (2008) Making markets work for people and the environment: employment creation from payment for eco-system services. Combating poverty and environmental degradation on a single budget while delivering real services to real people. Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies, Pretoria, 50ppGoogle Scholar
  2. Büscher B (2012) Payments for ecosystem services as neoliberal conservation: (reinterpreting) evidence from the Maloti-Drakensberg. S Afr Conserv Soc 10(1):29–41CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Cartwright A, Oelofse G (2016) Reflections on the valuing of ecosystem goods and services in Cape Town. In: Culwick C, Bobbins K (eds) A framework for a green infrastructure planning approach in the Gauteng City-Region. GCRO, Johannesburg, pp 040–059Google Scholar
  4. Costanza R, Daly HE (1992) Natural capital and sustainable development. Conserv Biol 6(1):37–46CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Costanza R, Kubiszewski I, Ervin D, Bluffstone R, Boyd J, Brown D, Chang H, Dujon V, Granek E, Polasky S, Shandas V, Yeakley A (2011) Valuing ecological systems and services. F1000 Rep Biol 3:14.  https://doi.org/10.3410/B3-14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cowling RM, Gibbs Russell GE, Hoffman MT, Hilton-Taylor C (1989) Patterns of plant species diversity in southern Africa. In: Huntley BJ (ed) Biotic diversity in Southern Africa: concepts and conservation. Oxford University Press, Cape Town, pp 19–50Google Scholar
  7. Díaz S, Pascual U, Stenseke M, Martín-López B, Watson RT, Molnár Z, Hill R, Chan KM, Baste IA, Brauman KA, Polasky S, Church A, Lonsdale M, Larigauderie A, Leadley PW, van Oudenhoven APE, van der Plaat F, Schröter M, Lavorel S, Aumeeruddy-Thomas Y, Bukvareva E, Davies K, Demissew S, Erpul G, Failler P, Guerra CA, Hewitt CL, Keune H, Lindley S, Shirayama Y (2018) Assessing nature’s contributions to people. Science 359(6373):270–272CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Dryzek JS (1997) The politics of the earth: environmental discourses. Oxford University Press, Oxford, 288ppGoogle Scholar
  9. Egoh B, Reyers B, Rouget M, Richardson DM, Le Maitre DC, van Jaarsveld AS (2008) Mapping ecosystem services for planning and management. Agric Ecosyst Environ 127(1–2):135–140CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Egoh BN, Reyers B, Carwardine J, Bode M, O’ Farrell PJ, Wilson KA, Possingham HP, Rouget M, De Lange W, Richardson DM, Cowling RM (2010) Safeguarding biodiversity and ecosystem services in the Little Karoo, South Africa. Conserv Biol 24(4):1021–1030CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Egoh BN, Reyers B, Rouget M, Richardson DM (2011) Identifying priority areas for ecosystem service management in South African grasslands. J Environ Manag 92(6):1642–1650CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Ehrlich PR, Ehrlich AH (1981) Extinction: the causes and consequences of the disappearance of species. Random House, New York, 305ppGoogle Scholar
  13. Everard M (2017) Ecosystem services, key issues. Routledge, Oxford, 188ppCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fisher B, Turner RK, Morling P (2009) Defining and classifying ecosystem services for decision making. Ecol Econ 68(3):643–653CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Gómez-Baggethun E, de Groot R, Lomas PL, Montes C (2010) The history of ecosystem services in economic theory and practice: from early notions to markets and payment schemes. Ecol Econ 69(6):1209–1218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Goodness J, Anderson PML (2013) Local assessment of Cape Town: navigating the management complexities of urbanization, biodiversity, and ecosystem services in the Cape Floristic Region. In: Elmqvist T, Fragkias M, Goodness J, Güneralp B, Marcotullio PJ, McDonald RI, Parnell S, Schewenius M, Sendstad M, Seto KC, Wilkinson C (eds) Urbanization, biodiversity and ecosystem services: challenges and opportunities. Springer, Dordrecht, pp 461–484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Griggs D, Stafford-Smith M, Gaffney O, Rockström J, Öhman MC, Shyamsundar P, Steffen W, Glaser G, Kanie N, Noble I (2013) Sustainable development goals for people and planet. Nature 495(7441):305–307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Harvey D (1996) Justice, nature and the geography of difference. Blackwell, Oxford, 468ppGoogle Scholar
  19. Hay D (2017) ‘Our water, our future’. Securing the water resources of the uMngeni Basin. Institute of Natural Resources, Pietermaritzburg, 43ppGoogle Scholar
  20. Heynen N, Kaika M, Swyngedouw E (2006) In the nature of cities: urban political ecology and the politics of urban metabolism. Routledge, Abingdon, 282ppGoogle Scholar
  21. Holness S, Skowno A (2013) Mapping ecological infrastructure for the greater uMngeni Catchment: technical metadata. Report for WWF South Africa, StellenboschGoogle Scholar
  22. Jackson S, Palmer LR (2015) Reconceptualizing ecosystem services: possibilities for cultivating and valuing the ethics and practices of care. Prog Hum Geogr 39(2):122–145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Knysna Municipality (2017) Draft Knysna spatial development framework, Strategic synthesis, 2017. Knysna Municipality, Knysna, 58ppGoogle Scholar
  24. Laros M, Birch S, Clover J (2013) Ecosystem-based approaches to building resilience in urban areas: towards a framework for decision-making criteria. Background Paper. CDKN & Ethekwini Municipality: ICLEI-Africa, 42ppGoogle Scholar
  25. Leopold A (1949) A Sand County Almanac. Oxford University Press, Oxford, p 226Google Scholar
  26. Mander M (2016) Valuing green assets in Gauteng – not the ‘valuation’ thereof. In: Culwick C, Bobbins K (eds) A framework for a green infrastructure planning approach in the Gauteng City-Region. GCRO, Johannesburg, pp 060–072Google Scholar
  27. MEA (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment) (2005) Ecosystems and human well-being: synthesis. Island Press, Washington, DC, 155ppGoogle Scholar
  28. Perera SJ, Ratnayake-Perera D, Procheş Ş (2011) Vertebrate distributions indicate a greater Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany region of endemism. S Afr J Sci 107(7/8):462.  https://doi.org/10.4102/sajs.v107i7/8.462CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Roberts D, Boon R, Diedrichs N, Douwes E, Govender N, McInnes A, McLean C, O’Donoghue S, Spires M (2012) Exploring ecosystem-based adaptation in Durban, South Africa: “learning-by-doing” at the local government coal face. Environ Urban 24(1):167–195CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. SANBI (2014) A framework for investing in ecological infrastructure in South Africa. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, 22ppGoogle Scholar
  31. Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2009) Connecting biodiversity and climate change mitigation and adaptation: report of the second ad hoc technical expert group on biodiversity and climate change, Technical Series No. 41. Convention on Biological Diversity, Montreal, 126ppGoogle Scholar
  32. Shackleton C, Shackleton S, Gambiza J, Nel E, Rowntree K, Urquhart P (2008) Links between ecosystem services and poverty alleviation: situation analysis for arid and semi-arid lands in southern Africa. DFID, NERC, ESRC: Ecosystem Services and Poverty Reduction Research Programme, 200ppGoogle Scholar
  33. Steffen W, Richardson K, Rockström J, Cornell SE, Fetzer I, Bennett EM, Biggs R, Carpenter SR, de Vries W, de Wits CA, Folke C, Gerten D, Heinke J, Mace GM, Persson LM, Ramanathan V, Reyers B, Sörlin S (2015) Planetary boundaries: guiding human development on a changing planet. Science 347(6223):736–748CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Strang V (2013) Conceptual relations: Water, ideologies, and theoretical subversions. In: Chen C, Macleod J, Neimanis A (eds) Thinking with water. McGill-Queen’s University Press, Montreal, Montreal, pp 185–211Google Scholar
  35. Sutherland C (2016) Society, space and environment: ‘Environmental spaces’ in Knysna, Southern Cape, South Africa. Unpublished PhD thesis. University of KwaZulu-Natal, DurbanGoogle Scholar
  36. Sutherland C, Roberts D (2014) Why leadership matters in water and climate governance, Chance2Sustain Opinion Paper No. 12. EADI, Bonn, 2ppGoogle Scholar
  37. Sutherland C, Sim V, Buthelezi S, Khumalo D (2016) Social constructions of environmental services in a rapidly densifying peri-urban area under dual governance in Durban, South Africa. Bothalia 46(2):a2128.  https://doi.org/10.4102/abc.v46i2.2128CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Swyngedouw E (2015) Urbanization and environmental futures: politicizing urban political ecologies. In: Perreault T, Bridge G, McCarthy J (eds) Handbook of political ecology. Routledge, London, pp 609–619Google Scholar
  39. van Jaarsveld AS, Biggs R, Scholes RJ, Bohensky E, Reyers B, Lynam T, Musvoto C, Fabricius C (2005) Measuring conditions and trends in ecosystem services at multiple scales: the Southern African Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (SAfMA) experience. Philos Trans R Soc Lond, Ser B: Biol Sci 360(1454):425–441CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Vogel C, Scott D, Culwick CE, Sutherland C (2016) Environmental problem-solving in South Africa: harnessing creative imaginaries to address ‘wicked’ challenges and opportunities. S Afr Geogr J 98(3):515–530CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. World Bank (2016) Environmental resources in eThekwini Municipality. eThekwini Municipality, DurbanGoogle Scholar
  42. WWF (2016) Living planet report 2016. Risk and resilience in a new era. WWF International, Gland, 74ppGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of KwaZulu-NatalDurbanSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations